A Backyard Treehouse Inspired by Hobbits

TreehouseADsketchA tree house should never overpower the tree in which it is built. It should sit lightly in the branches.” -Jeanie Stiles

Have you ever dreamed of having a treehouse in your backyard? Jeanie Stiles and her husband David did, so they designed one for their children, beginning with this sketch. They say it was inspired by The Hobbit, but it reminded me of Winnie-the-Pooh and the Hundred Acre Wood. Can’t you picture Owl peeking out from one of those windows?


This charming treehouse was featured in Architectural Digest (with photos by Billy Cunningham), which explains:

Protected from weather and adults, the kid-size interior forms a cozy hide-away, inspired by J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, a favorite of the children’s.

TreehouseAD2My kids would love this. So would I! I’d be sneaking up into that treehouse every summer afternoon with a book in one hand and a glass of lemonade in the other.

“Where did Mom go?”

“Did you check the treehouse?”

P.S. Thanks for all of your sweet birthday wishes yesterday! It was fun reading them all last night when I got home. You made my day! :-)


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  1. says

    This is so cool! I always dreamed of having a tree house! I can’t complain, I did have a tree “floor” which were a ladder built into a group of trees and a wooden platform, but no walls. It was still cool, though, but I couldn’t put any furniture up there or anything. I hope I can give my future kids a tree house!
    .-= Sarah @ Dream In Domestic´s last blog ..Revamping Recipes: Cheesy BBQ Beef Casserole =-.

  2. says

    Right on! I want a treehouse for MYSELF! I love the Swiss Family Robinson movie and Disney “attraction” b/c of the neat tree house. Speaking of which…wonder if you can still find SWR on VHS or DVD anymore…

    I love the two landings and the cute little window on this house. What a treasure!

  3. says

    That is just incredible! Every child in the world would love to have that.
    I’m sorry I’m late to say Happy Birthday! I hope you had a fun filled day.
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..A Boy Room =-.

  4. Carol M says

    What child (or child at heart) wouldn’t love that treehouse!

    And happy belated birthday. Great photo of your sidewalk party! Too funny. Love the dresses.

  5. Kat in Texas says

    Happy Belated Birthday, Julia! Hope your day was full of fun and surprises!

    Can I tell you how much I LOVE this treehouse?!?! I agree–reminds me so much of Winnie-the-Pooh. Missed it the first time around, so thanks for sharing again!

  6. says

    I hope you had a wonderful birthday! Tree houses, I had one a looong time ago. I loved it, it was really the only place to really escape and feel like I was on my own. Then my brother and all his friend would arrive and that moment was over! The one you’ve shown is completely charming…Janell

  7. says

    Oh my! Awesome treehouse! How I wish I had one….we’re thinking of building one but I highly doubt it’ll be that fancy. I don’t have a big sprawling tree like that either…mine is going to have be built between trees to support it.
    .-= Astrid´s last blog ..Fun, Friends & Geode Egg Update =-.

  8. says

    Oh my gosh, that is the cutest thing ever! Little kid adirondacks even! If I had kids, and they had this tree house, there is no way they could keep me out of it. I’m pretty sure it would quickly become officially known as “mom’s treehouse”!

  9. says

    Wow, I love this treehouse! My dad built one for my brother and me, but we really didn’t spend that much time in there for some reason. I feel guilty that he went to all that trouble, and then we didn’t use it. I do remember sitting up there the day after Christmas (must’ve been a mild winter), and writing a sad, after-Christmas song about all the presents being opened, etc. I think I’d just watched the Dolly Parton movie, A Smoky Mountain Christmas, and got all inspired. :) That’s the only song I’ve ever written, by the way. Maybe I should watch more Dolly Parton movies.
    .-= Kelli´s last blog ..Tuesday Truth #9 – Ridiculous commercials =-.

  10. says

    Wow!!! This is my “when I was a child” dream home!!! Ones I was trying to make one by myself (I was like 8) and it ends with me at the hospital and a broken giant rock on the garden (I was trying to put a branch at the right height) then my father has made a beautiful one for me but not a tree house like this one!!
    kisses and sorry for my english!!

  11. says

    Wow!!! This is my “when I was a child” dream home!!! Ones I was trying to make one by myself (I was like eight) and it ends with me at the hospital and a broken giant rock on the garden (I was trying to put a branch at the right height) then my father has made a beautiful one for me but not a tree house like this one!!
    kisses and sorry for my english!!

  12. greenie says

    Love, love, love treehouses! And you’re right–this is totally Pooh & Hundred Acre Wood material.

  13. says

    That is seriously amazing! I can’t imagine what I would have done with one of those as a child. I spent a lot of time just hanging out on tree branches anyway. My parents probably wouldn’t have been able to convince me to come inside from that tree house.
    .-= Lauren´s last blog ..50 Cups of Dirt =-.

  14. cheryl says

    First…Happy Belated Birthday. I love the sidewalk celebration. I to have photos of myself holding a birthday cake on the sidewalk among other places (HA). Those were the days when celebrations were meaningful and simple and did not have to happen in a HUGE way. Now on t0 the treehouse! I loved it so much. Treehouses are great for big people to. I could just picture myself entertaining my girlfriends in the treehouse with southern sweet iced tea. I am now dreaming of one for myself as well as my son. Thanks so much…I always love love love your blog!


  15. Dana says

    When I saw that sketch of the tree house, I immediately thought of Winnie-the-Pooh as well. It looks like like Owl’s house from the book I had growing up. And the finished tree house is just perfect and how every tree house should look. Love it :)

  16. Julie says

    What a great post! Thanks for sharing it with us. I love your blog, it’s always the first one I read, whenever I have time. Happy Late Birthday, too!

  17. says

    Thanks for posting this again, Julia – I enjoyed reading about it. I totally agree that it’s much more Winnie-the-Pooh than Hobbit, but maybe I was brainwashed by the style of drawing in the first picture. Either way, I would love a tree house just like this… might even share it with the kids, if they catch me on a good day 😉
    .-= Lori-Anne´s last blog ..Locked into Creative Mode: Wanda Lock =-.

  18. Rie says

    Wow, how magical. Of course the beautiful tree helps! happy birthday!

  19. says

    Wow! My hubby would luv that tree house since it’s inspired by the Hobbit. He’s a big fan. For me, the best thing is the tree.
    .-= Marie´s last blog ..Time to Pack =-.

  20. Catherine A. says

    Awesome. Thanks for sharing this tree house. I’ve always been intrigued by the integration of trees and homes. This one is just delightful!

  21. Kim says

    Now that is my kind of tree house. Pure awesome. I have always been intrigued by tree houses since I was a little girl. I remember wishing for one, but never got any. I love “Swiss Family Robinson” because of the tree houses they lived in, in the movie. What I would take to sleep in one.

  22. says

    That’s exactly what I thought when I saw that initial drawing! Winne the Pooh! And then when you look at the shots of the interior- that cute little door? This is totally the hundred acre wood. They are crazy. They’re just around the corner from pooh’s house!!

  23. Susan S says

    That is the perfect treehouse! Yep, I agree that it looks like it belongs to the Pooh crowd. I believe I would enclose at least one side to “cozy” it up a bit! Hee, hee, I’m laughing because I’m acting like it would be mine.
    I always wanted a treehouse for myself as much as for our kids, but hubby didn’t agree. Winnie the Pooh has always been a favorite and I can even do a good impression of Eeyore and a great impression of Tigger!

    Ta ta for now,
    Susan S

  24. says

    whoa, i imagine how inspired would i be jotting in my blogs while cozily sitting in one of the tiny chairs there in that tree house..!
    .-= Loida´s last blog ..Lucky.. =-.

  25. says

    Julia! Shoot – I missed your birthday! I hope it was a wonderful day, and you CERTAINLY deserve a day off from blogging for some celebrating of YOU!

    I can NOT believe this tree house! Great idea to post it again for your new readers. Wow … now where can I find a tree … ????
    .-= Polly´s last blog ..#3 – Cute handwriting. =-.

  26. says

    Julia, I am there with you in that treehouse, having a tea break or something. Wowza! And her talent in drawing, I looked her up after, I learned SOMETHING NEW FROM YOU, AGAIN! Jeanie Stiles. I am going to remember her. Her art, I love it. Her drawings just make me happy.

    Thank you for this post, I have a thing for trees but this post is unforgettable. Hope your weekend is lovely!
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Smashing Succulents:) =-.

  27. Lyn says

    Treehouse is great, but it was what you said about re-posting this one that really impacted me. I started a blog about three months ago and I am feeling a lot like you must have felt early on. I’m posting great stuff, but I don’t have any readers. Thanks for the unintentional inspiration, and for the intentional inspiration breaks you give me when I need someplace wonderful to go.

  28. Amy says

    Wow, what an amazing treehouse! We just finished one ourselves, but it’s much, much more simplistic than this. There’s not even a roof (just open to the tree top). We love it, though. It’s funny that you said it reminded you of Winnie the Pooh, because as soon as my 3 year old son saw the picture on the screen, he joyfully exclaimed, “Owl’s house!”

    (new reader, btw … and I’m already hooked!)

  29. says

    How adorable!!! Wishing I had the money to put into the extra things like that when my children were smaller. Oh well…we are healthy and happy-the treehouse would have just been some icing on the cake! I hope the children who have it love it until it falls apart from tons and tons of use! Or that it lasts until their own children can play in it! =)
    .-= Josanne´s last blog ..Simon, Once Again! =-.